About the Author and Book Summary

About the Author

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Donald Cleveland has dual undergraduate degrees in political science and journalism and a graduate degree in policy planning and public opinion. He served in numerous public interest capacities including: president of a national governmental interest group; was involved in the evaluation of the Federal Intergovernmental Personnel Act; delegate to a Federal Regional Council; a director of one of the country’s largest public construction authorities; served as legislative liaison to a multi-state compact commission, was assistant director of a state legislative research department and headed a state governmental association. His legislative and lobbying experience covered a span of thirteen years during which time he wrote over 400 laws or amendments and three state constitutional amendments. He was also instrumental in the initial funding of the Federal Rural Development Act. He has been active in numerous governmental and development groups and associations. He also served in Europe as a captain in the U.S. Army during the “cold war.”

Book Summary

Revitalizing America takes an in-depth look at the promises of democracy made to Americans and the world, and the betrayals of those promises. The promises laid out in the Declaration of Independence, the Preamble to the Constitution, the Gettysburg Address and the Pledge of Allegiance have created a Santa Claus type myth about our government that is shattered every day in the world of real politics. The victims are “we the people.” Our grievances can be recited just as the American revolutionists called out the king’s offenses in the Declaration of Independence. Violations of human and civil rights, massive secret tests using poisonous materials on the citizenry without public knowledge or consent, old fashioned bribery and greed of public officials are some of the outrageous transgressions.

The book describes how money and relationships that are truly conflicts of interest have caused the death of many Americans and citizens of foreign countries. Whether it is the death of 100,000 Guatemalans to save an American Banana king’s interests or 7000 American deaths a year as a result of eating disease infected meat, the outrages continue. In areas where we place faith in the Food and Drug Administration to protect us, it is discovered that medications are approved based on bribes or known falsifications of drug studies. The banking industry fills its pockets over and over again by ruining the Small Business Administration loan process and going further to demand and take over student loan administration chewing up enough in service fees to deprive 1.7 million students of loans.

During the “Cold War” era Americans were taught that the communists will take everything you have including your home and all of your possessions. The book challenges the concept of government foreclosures on homesteads for back taxes. The principle behind such seizures is that the government ultimately owns everything. While the concept was originally developed to punish those who refused to pay their taxes to support the Revolutionary War, it is now applied against all of us as if we are the enemy. The unbridled taking of personal rights and property for alleged tax violations continues even though several legislative attempts have been made; though poorly, to end the practice.

Legislative bodies at all levels of government are full of “hogs with their noses in the trough.” Individual power binges that include everything from bribery to sex parties are not uncommon, and the bribes and favors always find their way into legislation. If the legislators don’t get caught in the process they end up as millionaires sitting on the boards of large corporations like Disney, Xerox and Unum Insurance Company. They receive salaries of $80,000 a year and huge stock options garnered as a reward for hiding a $1 billion tax break for a company in a law passed at 2:00 in the morning.

Many Americans are forced to turn to the courts for “justice.” However, the word justice and the American court system are oxymoron’s . The court system is so horrifying that judges can act without published rules of procedure, and totally excuse themselves from the laws governing civil rights abuses even if they act in a corrupt or abusive manner beyond the scope of their duties. Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States let over 90 percent of the cases appealed to it languish while they take one quarter of the year off. Rather than hearing cases, they prefer to be paid to take junkets to Europe or teach as visiting professors at colleges around the world while receiving between $180,000 to $200,000 a year in salary from the American people to do their job. Judges need to work full time instead of running off to Oxford while someone’s death sentence appeal gathers dust on their desk.

Our human and civil rights are abused through massive unauthorized spying and putting radioactive material in the cereal of retarded hospital patients. The executive and legislative branches act as if the Constitution and laws they passed didn’t apply to them. As a result of their careless attitudes their leaders feel free to violate both the Nuremburg Code and the Geneva Conventions (Treaties). They create plans that “re-import” tactics used throughout the world to subvert other governments and their people to be used against us.

Americans must now re-assert the power of the people, and create new mechanisms in government and the Constitution that will end the abuses, and grant more specific enumerated rights in fundamental law. No person in the government is above the law, and no institution in government should be allowed to act unfettered between the lines of the Constitution. Restrictions claiming “sovereign immunity” belonged to kings and queens. America hasn’t had a monarch for almost 250 years. It’s ridiculous to allow this archaic concept to protect those who allowed black men to die of syphilis, plunged the nation into war through lies and deceit, or use their office to gain personal enrichment. It is time to create a fourth branch of government of non-partisan citizens, who have the power to police all branches of government. The people need to be given the power to enforce the law if the government doesn’t act.

The nation must become one, and rights must be truly equal throughout the nation. Certain fundamental rights cannot be restricted to a judicial decision in three states while 47 other states are allowed to ignore the decision. Laws providing civil and human rights must be national in scope, subject to the same standard and methods of adjudication.

It’s our duty to remember our country was born through a revolution, and we must revitalize our democracy through a political and economic revolution. The people need to take back the government!

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